Georges St. Pierre and Matt Serra square off at the weigh-ins for UFC 69: Shootout. Photo property of the Ultimate Fighting Championship.
After years of waiting, the Ultimate Fighting Championship finally made their first trek up to Canada official when they announced UFC 83: St. Pierre vs Serra II during a press conference earlier today at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada earlier this morning.
In attendance at the press conference were UFC President Dana White and current welterweight champions Georges St. Pierre and Matt Serra who will unify their belts in a main event rematch of their fight at UFC 69: Shootout last year, where Serra stopped St. Pierre with strikes to win the UFC welterweight title.
“I’m actually excited to go to Canada and fight St-Pierre in his hometown,” Serra said at the press conference earlier today. “I think this puts more pressure on him than it does me. I know he’s going to come at me hard, but I’m ready for that and I’m preparing for a great fight. I know that’s what I would do if a guy knocked me out like that. But I plan on staying the champ and taking my belt back home to Long Island.”
St. Pierre, a native of Montreal, will be fighting in front of his hometown under the UFC banner for the first time in his career. After originally speculating that St. Pierre would not be ready in time for the event due to his bout against Matt Hughes in December, St. Pierre came away with the interim welterweight belt relatively unscathed, allowing him to partake in the historic event.
“I am at the same point as I was last year when I fought Matt Serra, except this time I am fighting as the contender not the champion,” said St-Pierre. “It’s a dream come true to have this historic UFC event in Canada, I’ve waited my whole life for this opportunity, and especially fighting for – and winning – the world title in front of my people.”
White announced the complete card for the event, which looks like the following so far:
Georges St. Pierre vs Matt Serra
Rich Franklin vs Travis Lutter
Michael Bisping vs Charles McCarthy
Nate Quarry vs Kalib Starnes
Jason MacDonald vs Joe Doerksen
Mac Danzig vs Mark Bocek
Sam Stout vs Rich Clementi
Ed Herman vs Demian Maia
Jonathan Goulet vs Kuniyoshi Hironaka
Those that were expecting middleweight contender Patrick Cote to be a color commentator at the event received a pleasant surprise when White announced that “The Predator” would be on the card as well, going up against an opponent yet to be announced.
Anyone planning on purchasing tickets for the event should start making plans to act fast. According to White, UFC Fight Club members have already got their hands on more than 13,000 tickets for the event. The Bell Centre holds approximately 21,273 people.
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